HOW TO ENJOY THINGS MORE

In Eyes Wide Open, Steve DeWitt reveals some wonderful truths, “Christians who properly place God as the source and goal of the things they enjoy will find themselves enjoying those things even more. In truth, the way we as believers relish created beauties ought to outstrip that of unbelievers, since we neither find our identity in them nor hold on to them as ultimate.”

Secondary happiness, which is found in something or someone God has created, ultimately leads back to Him. The secondary only fulfills its purpose when people follow it to the primary.

Robert Crofts wrote, “Let these earthly pleasures and felicities excite and encourage us to thankfulness, to all duties of virtue and piety, to look higher to their fountain, to God himself, to heaven, to love and enjoy in Him, to contemplate His infinite goodness, love, beauty, sweetness, glory, and excellency.”

Paul said, “What is our hope, our joy, or the crown in which we will glory in the presence of our Lord Jesus when he comes? Is it not you? Indeed, you are our glory and joy” 1 Thessalonians 2:19-20

Paul understood that God is our primary joy. It’s fine for us to say that our children, our grandchildren, and our friends are joys if we remember that God made them and works through them to bring us happiness. They’re not lesser joys, but greater ones—precisely because we know whom these gifts come from! Then we will be able to say as Paul did:

Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus…I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well-fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do all this through him who gives me strength. Philippians 4:4-7, 11-13

The Bible teaches absolute truth. Success and a productive life come from embracing the following Biblical principles:

1. Truth exists and is knowable.

2. Truth upheld brings blessings.

3. Truth disregarded brings consequences, usually bad.

Embracing a biblically informed worldview of “truth” brings “joy unspeakable” (1 Peter 1:8) and “abundant life” (John 10:10) as Jesus promised to obedient followers.

A GOOD NEWS STORY

A new report by the United Bible Societies (UBS) has shown the distribution of Bibles increased worldwide in 2021. At least 32.6 million complete Bible editions were distributed last year following the “pandemic-related slump in Bible distribution the previous year”, an increase of 5.5% in 2021 compared to 2020. Around 20% of all distributed Bibles were downloaded from the internet.

The distribution of digital editions is playing an increasingly important role, especially in crisis regions such as Mozambique. The Bible Society there was able to provide a digital Bible edition to a total of 51,000 people. However, the distribution containing only the New Testament was down, going from 5.7 million to 5.1 million in 2021. Horst Scheurenbrand, head of the German Bible Society said: “apart from Europe, more full Bibles were distributed on every continent than in the previous year. This is a good sign after the decline the year before”.

God is still at work making sure His Word, His Truth is reaching all those that are seeking truth.

CONTROLLING OUR THOUGHTS

Since we cannot bear righteous fruit without God’s Spirit, how can we take captive thoughts that are unwholesome?

The Apostle Paul said “We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ” 2 Corinthians10:5. So how do we demolish such thoughts when they enter our minds? Again, without God’s Spirit, we have no hope of reforming our own thoughts.

Paul said that “The god of this age has blinded the minds of unbelievers so that they cannot see the light of the gospel that displays the glory of Christ, who is the image of God” 2 Corinthians 4:4

So, until we’re set free from the clutch of Satan and his minions, we remain blind, even though we think we can see. Only by trusting in Christ and receiving the Holy Spirit do we have the power to resist the Devil, and only then will he flee from us. David had a way of resisting evil thoughts and then having those thoughts bear sin. He wrote:

I have stored up your word in my heart, that I might not sin against you.” Psalm 119:11

Along with the Spirit of God, we have the Word of God to help us avoid such evil thoughts, and only then are we able to “not sin against” God.

THE BIBLE IS TIMELESS TRUTH

Post by John MacArthur

Wednesday, January 19, 2022

God does not intend for His Word to be subdivided, excerpted, and wrenched out of context. The Bible speaks with consistent authority and perpetual relevance in all matters. It does not require correction, innovation, or editorial oversight.

The key to the Reformation was biblical preaching, which has been the key to every revival. The church flourishes when biblical doctrine is faithfully preached from Bible texts. At such times, the truth of God’s Word is properly in focus, as the Spirit originally intended.

But there are times that are dominated by excusing the Bible’s supposed irrelevance. People say, “We believe the doctrines of the Bible, but most people just do not identify with its old language and old stories from an agrarian time period.” So they argue that the truths of Scripture must be placed in a contemporary package to better reach people. This, in essence, is to say that we have a more effective way to reach people than the Holy Spirit had in authoring the Scripture.

One current advocate of such proud hubris is Andy Stanley. The pastor of one of the largest congregations in America, he has encouraged believers to “unhitch the Christian faith” from the Old Testament.” He had previously admonished pastors and teachers to never say, “The Bible says.” The result is that biblical doctrine is stripped of its biblical attire and dressed in faddish contemporary fashion. Such meddling is an assault on the power and authority of the Bible. God knew how He wanted His doctrine dressed, and people do not have the liberty to rearrange it to their own preference.

Once such ideas become entrenched, doctrine degrades until it comes to flatly contradict the Bible. This accurately describes the state of many churches today, where the man-centered, therapeutic doctrine they preach flies in the face of the biblical text.

The call for us today is to return to the doctrine of the Bible as God has intended it to be presented. God has set forth His truth in His chosen biblical contexts, proportions, and relations, and in such stories, parables, analogies, and narratives. He knows what suits the soul of man, and under the work of the Spirit of God, no other forms can supersede or improve on the Word of God. It is characterized by objectivity, rationality, veracity, authority, and integrity.

If God’s people desire to fulfill their calling to be salt and light in this sinful world, they must cultivate a high view of His Word. The church must embrace and proclaim Scripture in its fullness, boldly holding it forth as God’s standard for life and godliness.

But I certify you, brethren, that the gospel which was preached of me is not after man. For I neither received it of man, neither was I taught it, but by the revelation of Jesus Christ.” Galatians 1:11

POSTMODERNISM – A WORLD GONE MAD

One symptom of madness is being disconnected from reality. That is an apt description for the whole mindset of Postmodernism. It teaches truth is a construction, not a discovery; a function of the will, not the intellect; a matter of political power, not rational inquiry.

WHAT IS TRUTH:

Only our Creator God knows the truth about us and His world. Moreover, He has revealed the truth to us not only through His prophets and His Word (Bible) but by God the Son, Jesus, coming to earth to not only reveal the truth but also to provide the means of our salvation. He paid the price for our rebellion. He died and rose again that we might have eternal life, not just the brief life on this earth. Death in Adam, Life in Christ. Reject God’s Word and you reject the truth.

Former editor of the New York Times, Bari Weiss was hounded from her job for refusing to conform to the canons of political correctness and the left wing culture of the Newsroom. Bari Weiss tells left-wing Brian Stelter of CNN how ‘the world has gone mad,‘ she lists ‘people who work at’ CNN as a cause

Brian Stelter was confronted by ex-New York Times journalist Bari Weiss over CNN’s coverage. 

Weiss has written that many Americans “feel the world has gone mad,” so the left-wing CNN host asked her what she meant by that comment.

 “Where can I start? Well, when you have the chief reporter on the beat of COVID for The New York Times talking about how questioning or pursuing the question of the lab leak is racist, the world has gone mad. When you’re not able to say out loud and in public there are differences between men and women, the world has gone mad. When we’re not allowed to acknowledge that rioting is rioting and it is bad and that silence is not violence, but violence is violence, the world has gone mad,” Weiss said. “When you’re not able to say the Hunter Biden laptop is a story worth pursuing, the world has gone mad. When, in the name of progress, young school children, as young as kindergarten, are being separated in public schools because of their race, and that is called progress instead of segregation, the world has gone mad. There are dozens of examples.”

Weiss said the news media, publishing houses, Hollywood and universities are all guilty of the same thing, they are narrowing, in a radical way, what’s acceptable to say and what isn’t.” Weiss added she feels “disinformation by omission” is plaguing the journalism industry. 

Fortunately, The source of truth knows exactly how this madness will “play out/unfold” and He has revealed it to us in His Word so we will know and not be unprepared. A time of testing is coming for Christians in nations that have been based on the Judeo/ Christian faith like we have never experienced before. God is separating the wheat from the chaff.

Then they will deliver you up to tribulation and put you to death, and you will be hated by all nations for my name’s sake. And then many will fall away and betray one another and hate one another. And many false prophets will arise and lead many astray. And because lawlessness will be increased, the love of many will grow cold. But the one who endures to the end will be saved. And this gospel of the kingdom will be proclaimed throughout the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come.Matthew 24:9-14

MOST PEOPLE REJECT TRUTH

In a recently posted video, U.S. Olympic gold medallist Sydney McLaughlin opened up about the “toxic” nature of fame and the pain she’s felt as those around her have rejected her because of her faith in Jesus. McLaughlin, 22, filmed the video after the Olympic Trials, which were held in Eugene, Oregon, in late June, but didn’t share it until this week.

AP Photo/Kyusung Gong
Sydney McLaughlin says Fame Is ‘Such a Test of Faith’ as critics reject ‘Jesus Living in Me’

She said it “hurts” not knowing “when it’s going to be enough for a lot of people,” adding she’s “worked really hard, and been very cautious of how I carry myself, of the things that I post because I want to glorify God and I want to be a good example to people, but our world only accepts ignorance.”

McLaughlin, who has been very outspoken about her faith in Christ, said she feels she’s being rejected because she gives God the glory for her success.

People reject truth,” the New Jersey native explained. “I know they’re not rejecting me. They’re rejecting Jesus living in me. That’s fine, but I’m just being honest, like, sometimes my flesh has a problem with that.”

In the caption for the video, McLaughlin said she feels the 10-minute clip carries “a deeper message than just my emotions that I think others may need to hear.”

“Even in success,” she wrote, “there can be pain. Even in triumph, there can be tribulations. But how you respond, and the lens in which you view those situations, provides an opportunity for growth and change.”

“I am beyond grateful for everything that has taken place this year,” the Olympian continued. “But the thing I am most grateful for is a renewed mind that has allowed for me to look at a video like this and see the changes Christ is doing in my life.”

SILENCING THE VOICE OF TRUTH

Great message from Shane Idleman challenging pastors on what they are preaching in their churches. Can they be silent on the big issues: creation, abortion, marriage, gender, sexuality, morality.

Shane starts his message with this challenge “​Let Me Get This Straight: you can have your gun protests, lie in the media, teach evolution to our kids, flaunt sexual sin and gay marriage, teach preschool kids about transgenderism, support murdering a child in the womb, but I need to shut my mouth? I don’t think so.

Why can everybody voice, everything else, but the pulpit need to be silenced? It makes no sense. Let me tell you why. It’s because they want to silence the voice of truth.

We are talking about important moral issues that will have huge ramifications when a nation departs from God. What are you leaving for your grandchildren and your children?”

AT LAST, TRUTH EMERGES ON TRANSGENDERISM

A CBS “60 Minutes” segment highlighting the suffering of individuals harmed by transgender medicalization has raised the ire of LGBT activists and has others believing a shift in the debate over transgenderism is near. 

In its coverage about the various bills that have arisen across the country aiming to prohibit the use of experimental drugs and the performing of cosmetic gender surgeries on minors in several states, the Sunday broadcast featured an approximately 7-minute portion featuring detransitioners.

Detransitioners are those who once identified as transgender but now regret their decisions to transition and have begun reintegrating with their biological sex. 

Detransitioners
Detransitioners speak with journalist Lesley Stahl during an episode of CBS’ “60 minutes.” | Screenshot: CBSNews.com

The segment featured veteran television journalist Lesley Stahl interviewing several young people who had undergone medicalized gender transition procedures. All of them said they were rushed into a decision and affirmed their transgender identities too hastily. 

“I didn’t get enough pushback on transitioning. I went for two appointments and after the second one, I had my letter to go get on cross-sex hormones,” said one young man named Garrett from Baton Rouge, Louisiana. 

Stahl responded, with seeming disbelief: “Two visits?”

While repeated assertions abound from transgender activists who argue that gender-dysphoric youth are at higher odds than the general public to commit suicide if not allowed to transition, Garrett said his depression worsened after he had his testicles removed and had surgery on his chest to appear more female. 

“I had never really been suicidal before until I had my breast augmentation,” he said. “And about a week afterward, I wanted to actually kill myself. I had a plan and I was going to do it but I just kept thinking about my family to stop myself.”

Another detransitioner, Grace Lidinsky-Smith, chose to go on testosterone and have her breasts amputated during her 20s. She told Stahl how surprised she was at the ease and speed she could alter her body in pursuit of being a male and then revert to her natal sex.

“I can’t believe I transitioned then detransitioned, including hormones and surgery, in the course of like, less than one year,” she said.

Not long after undergoing a double mastectomy, she said that she “started to have a really disturbing sense that, like, a part of my body was missing, almost a ghost limb feeling about being like, there’s something that should be there.”

Following the segment, “60 Minutes” interviewed the president of the prominent pro-LGBT activist group Human Rights Campaign, Alphonso David. The activist argued that by highlighting the accounts of detransitioners, “already marginalized” trans-identified people are further harmed.

Despite the broadly sympathetic coverage, transgender activists in the legal, psychiatric and medical fields were upset that detransitioners stories were given airtime in the broadcast. They took to social media to voice their complaints. 

This generation is much like Pontius Pilate when He responded to Jesus with “What is truth“, Jesus said He came into the world to bear witness to the truth.

For this purpose I was born and for this purpose I have come into the world—to bear witness to the truth. Everyone who is of the truth listens to my voice” (John 18:37).

Jesus does not give us the alternative of deciding what may be true for you might not be true for me. “I am the way and the truth and the life” (John 14:6) is about as far away from a postmodern statement on truth as you can get.

ABSOLUTE TRUTH

True Christianity is based on the belief that there is absolute truth based on the word of our Creator. The opening words of the Bible are: “In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earthGenesis 1:1. When we look at the Bible, we discover a number of principles about truth:

1. Truth is absolute by the will of God. God not only reveals Himself as the Trinitarian God, but also as the God who determines what is true and false. Jesus says in John 4:23, “But the hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for the Father is seeking such to worship Him.” If we really want to discover truth, we must be willing to believe that it is the Creator who determines truth from falsehood—not our own emotions or intellectual theories.

2. Evil, or sin, is the enemy of truth. The biblical definition of sin outlines what is false and hurtful to human beings. Truth is an understanding of reality that ultimately determines thoughts, morality and actions.

3. Truth is revealed by God in the life of Christ and in the word of Scripture. In John 17:17 Christ prayed, “Sanctify them by Your truth. Your word is truth.”

Moral truth is contained, then, in moral teachings, or law, given by God. Since these laws define the reality of life as ordained by the Creator, they exist whether we acknowledge them or not. The consequences of sin are just as inescapable whether committed knowingly or in ignorance.

The foundation of the law is God Himself. By trusting in Him and acting according to what He has commanded, we don’t have to experience the painful effects of sin. Moreover, for Christians who have been born again and have received the Holy Spirit indwelling their own spirit, we have received the power necessary to obey His instructions. “The spirit of man is the lamp of the Lord, searching all his innermost parts.Proverbs 20:27 The Holy Spirit is the oil required for our lamp, our spirit to function as God intended.

Jesus said, “The first of all the commandments is: ‘Hear, O Israel, the LORD our God, the LORD is one. And you shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength.’ This is the first commandment. And the second, like it, is this: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these” Mark 12:29-31

This simple teaching by Jesus Christ forms the basis of all truth. There is a choice between simply going on the way you have been and turning towards God. It’s up to you.

All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work.” 2 Timothy 3:16

END TIMES SIGN – ECONOMIC COLLAPSE

A “LAST DAYS” PROPHETIC EVENT IS UPON US AS ECONOMISTS REALISE THE WORLD’S DEBT IS BEYOND RECOVERY. THE WORLD HAS NEVER BEEN AS INDEBTED AS IT IS RIGHT NOW.

 

In the month of October, 2017 alone, the US national debt has soared by nearly a quarter of a trillion dollars.

The government of the largest, most important economy in the world is completely, woefully bankrupt. And its rate of decline is accelerating.

You’d think this would be on the front page of every major newspaper in the world. But it’s not. It’s shrugged off as par for the course, as if accumulating historic levels of debt is somehow consequence-free. And this complacency is what I find the MOST bizarre. Consider the following: the US government spends nearly the ENTIRETY of its tax revenue on Social Security, Medicare, and Interest on the Debt. Throw in national defence spending and the budget deficit is already hundreds of billions of dollars.

The only realistic way out is for the US government to eventually capitulate… and default. 

This could mean selectively defaulting on holders of US debt (for example– the Chinese, Japanese, Federal Reserve, Social Security Trust Fund, etc.);  one day Uncle Sam simply stops paying.

Or it could mean defaulting on promises made to citizens, like providing a strong national defense, maintaining a stable currency, or paying out Social Security benefits as advertised.

Each of these scenarios has its own particular consequences, ranging from steep inflation to a full-blown global financial crisis.

Bottom line, there is no possible rosy scenario here for the USA and Europe is in a worse debt crisis.  As the global economy is interrelated, if major trading blocks like the Eurozone or countries like the US or China go into recession, it’s likely to affect economic growth around the world.

Sadly, as Jesus prophesied  in the last days there would be a great falling away in the church, even the elect being deceived. This is most evident in the denominational church which is compromising with the world on issues such as gay marriage, homosexual leaders in the church, evolution and billions of years.

Make sure you are in a Bible believing church that understands we are in the “last days” and is equipping the Saints to bring in the harvest. As the world gets darker our light will shine brighter. Our joy and hope in the Lord will be evident and the power of God on display with healing and miracles following. Live eternal NOW.